Posted: Tuesday August 1, 2006 12:54PM; Updated: Tuesday August 1, 2006 1:32PM
Greg Maddux gets a ticket to the West Coast, where he can end his career closer to home.
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1. New York Yankees Abreu is an on-base machine who'll fit nicely into the Yankees' lineup, and Craig Wilson gives them a viable first-base platoon with Andy Phillips.But gutty Cory Lidle may be the catch of the trading season since it brings to a close the Sidney Ponson Experiment. As one AL exec noted, "Sidney Ponson does not belong with the New York Yankees.'' Amen to that.
2. Los Angeles Dodgers GM Ned Colletti was the one buyer who pulled off multiple meaningful deals on deadline day, landing 327-game winner Greg Maddux and multitalented infielder Julio Lugo. It may not get the Dodgers to the playoffs, but at least it made them feel better in the longest, hottest summer in L.A. in years.
3. Kansas City Royals Dayton Moore has been a GM for all of five minutes, and he already gets it. The Schuerholz protégé showed he already knows how to hold a selloff (a necessity for a Royals exec) and topped it all off by landing Rockies first-base prospect Ryan Shealy, who was coveted by the Yankees and the Red Sox and who, according to one AL scout, is "Kevin Youkilis with big power.''
4. Milwaukee Brewers Rather than get caught in no man's land with a host of colleagues, GM Doug Melvin acted quickly to trade the unsignable Carlos Lee and gather three young talents -- Francisco Cordero, Kevin Mench and Laynce Nix -- whom he knows well from his Texas days (and who were underachieving in Buck Showalter's stifling system). Melvin got players both good enough to satisfy owner Mark Attanasio's burning desire to win now and young enough to enhance Milwaukee's future.
5. Cincinnati Reds GM Wayne Krivsky has his team in wild-card position thanks to his early deals for Bronson Arroyo and Brandon Phillips. He took some hits (including here) for surrendering two every-day players for two non-closing relievers, but maybe he was just the first to recognize the power of the pen. For the first time, I think they may make it to the postseason.
6. Texas Rangers While others were talking, baseball's youngest GM, Jon Daniels, was maneuvering. They're still a long shot in my book to beat the Angels and the A's, but Daniels made two scores and gave them a chance by adding the slugger Lee and beating Boston to Kip Wells.
7. Detroit Tigers Baseball's best team got maybe one percent better (hey, every bit helps) when GM Dave Dombrowski acquired Sean Casey, a left-handed hitter and veteran presence, two things they could use.
8. Cleveland Indians GM Mark Shapiro can conduct a clinic on how to stage a selloff. Unlike some of the other sellers and should-be sellers, he found new homes for everyone in the last year of their contract who couldn't clear waivers. Nice work.
9. Pittsburgh Pirates GM Dave Littlefield took a lot of knocks for waiting too long, but no one got more done on deadline day. And Nady is an absolute steal.
Winners (non-team category)
1. Greg Maddux The 327-game winner gets to escape the craziness of the Confines and should enjoy ending his glorious career on the West Coast, within commuting distance of his Dana Point home and driving distance of his Las Vegas roots.
2. Ryan Shealy Rockies GM Dan O'Dowd did him a favor by removing him from Todd Helton's shadow and sending him to the Royals, where he could start at any position he chooses.
3. Alfonso Soriano's dentist Bowden went on at his press conference for what seemed like 15 minutes about Soriano having the greatest smile in baseball. Who else to thank for the choppers?